CONNECTICUT NUTRITION STANDARDS
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CONNECTICUT NUTRITION STANDARDS PUBLIC ACT 06-63: AN ACT CONCERNING HEALTHY FOOD AND BEVERAGES IN SCHOOLS Beverage Compliance is Required ACCEPTABLE BEVERAGES FOR SALE:

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CONNECTICUT NUTRITION STANDARDSPUBLIC ACT 06-63: AN ACT CONCERNING HEALTHY FOOD AND BEVERAGES IN SCHOOLS

  • Beverage Compliance is Required

  • ACCEPTABLE BEVERAGES FOR SALE:

  • Milk, no more that 4g sugar per ounce; Non-dairy Milk, no more than 4g sugar per ounce and no more than 35% of calories from fat and 10% calories from sat. fat; 100% Fruit or Vegetable Juice, Water with Fruit or Vegetable Juice; Water

  • No artificial sweeteners allowed in any beverage

  • No added sugars or sweeteners allowed in juice and water beverages

  • Size is limited to 12 fluid oz., except water in unlimited quantity

  • The regulation addresses beverages sold to students on school premises throughout regular day (includes vending machines, school stores, cafeteria, culinary arts, fund raisers, etc.


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Public Act 06-63:Section 3Healthy Food Certification

  • Compliance is Optional

  • Nutrition standards were developed through a collaborative effort of approximately ten organizations, including the American Heart Association, Connecticut Dietetics Association, Yale University, State Department of Education, New England Dairy & Food Council, University of Connecticut, School Nutrition Association of Connecticut

  • Nutrition guidelines from numerous states were collected and compared to establish the nutritional guidelines. Connecticut’s Nutritional Standards are based upon sound nutritional science and The Dietary Guidelines.


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Connecticut Nutrition Standards for Snacks and Dessert Items

Product must containno more than

  • 7 grams of total fat per serving and no more than 35% of calories from fat (except nuts, seeds, peanut butter and other nut butters and cheeses.)

  • 2 grams of saturated and/or trans fat per serving and no more than 10% of calories from saturated/trans fat

  • 15 grams of added sugar per serving and no more than 35% by product’s weight

  • Snacks & desserts may not contain artificial sweeteners


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Connecticut Nutrition Standards for Ala Carte Entrees

  • If an entrée item that is planned and served as part of a USDA reimbursable meal for the day is also served ala carte, it does not need to meet any additional nutrition standards.

  • For those entrees that are notpart of USDA’s meal pattern:

  • No more than 18 grams total fat

  • No more than 5 grams of saturated and/or trans fat

  • No more than 15 grams added sugar


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Connecticut Nutrition Standards for Ala Carte Side Dishes

  • Soup – One cup maximum portion. No more than:

    7 grams fat; 2 grams saturated and trans fat; 15 grams of added sugars

  • Rice & Pasta – No larger than the serving size normally planned and served as part of the USDA reimbursable meal and no more than:

    7 grams fat; 2 grams saturated and trans fat; 15 grams of added sugars

  • Fruits & Vegetables – ½ cup minimum serving for quality fruits and vegetables

  • Fruits and Vegetables with added fat, i.e. French fries –

    ½ cup maximum serving and no more than:

    7 grams fat; 2 grams saturated and trans fat; 15 grams of added sugars


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Optional Healthy Food Certification

  • School districts wishing to certify under the State’s Healthy Food Certification must comply with the new nutrition standards for foods offered for sale to students at all times, in all schools and from all sources, including school stores, vending machines, school cafeterias, culinary arts programs, and fundraising activities on school premises during the school day

  • Certified school districts shall receive 10 cents per lunch, based on the total number of reimbursable lunches served in the district in the prior school year

  • 81 Connecticut school districts are participating and

  • 83 districts have decided not to participate at this time


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PROS & CONSOF IMPLEMENTING HEALTHY FOOD GUIDANCE CERTIFICATION

Pros & Cons are based solely on my experience thus far: Positive aspects:

  • Knowledge that your district is participating in a state-approved healthy snack/food program

  • Many items on the approved list are popular with students, e.g. branded chips and cookies and are readily available

  • Serves as a nutrition model to students and teaches correct portion size

  • Ability to market Healthy Food Certification to parents, students, staff, the media, on menus, etc.

  • Financial support realized with the 10 cents per reimbursable meal. (This equates to an additional $24,000 in my district this school year.)


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PROS & CONS continued

  • Negative aspects:

  • Student acceptance issues, especially in secondary school. Transition works best over a few school years. High school students were primarily unhappy with the new beverage law which is mandatory and not with the ala carte snacks, desserts, and foods offered under the new food guidelines.

  • State-approved food list is long (245 pg.), constantly updated with deletions or additions, and not all approved snacks are readily available.

  • Policing the entire school district to ensure compliance and annual documentation is time consuming and usually falls on the shoulders of the food service director.

  • Implementation sometimes seems senseless, e.g. a three oz. bagel or a cookie must be packaged individually for sale but students may purchase as many packages they desire.


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IMPACT OF HEALTHY FOOD AND BEVERAGE GUIDANCE CERTIFICATION

  • Biggest financial impact for all Connecticut School Districts is the new mandatory beverage regulation

    A comparison of last school year to this year in my district:

  • Participation in reimbursable meals decrease of 1.5%

  • Snacks/Ice Cream sales increase of 2%

  • Beverage sales decrease of 15%

  • Ala Carte sales increase of 22.5%

  • Overall sales increase of 9.5%

  • Actual revenue increase of 1.25%


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